Building Office Add-ins… by Michael Zlatkovsky [PDF/iPad/Kindle]
Building Office Add-ins using Office.js
Building Office Add-ins using Office.js
Building Office Add-ins using Office.js

Last updated on 2017-05-24

About the Book

This book is about creating Office Add-ins – and in particular, about the new Office 2016 wave of Office.js APIs.

Want to get started with just the very core concepts, before buying the book? See, which contains abridged content for some of the key topics in this book. Or better yet, buy the book regardless: I am sure you'll find the topics therein new and useful for writing add-ins; and if you don't, LeanPub's Happiness Guarantee will let you get a full refund anytime in the first 45 days.

You can also download some sample chapters, or view them in your browser.


Office 2016 has seen a major re-birth of the API model, with hundreds of new APIs created for Excel and Word and OneNote. These APIs are cross-platform, are built on a modern web framework, and offer some of the same powerful functionality that previously was only available on the Desktop.

In spirit, the new Office.js APIs are reasonably similar to their VBA/VSTO counterparts, but with the notable difference of being async  which brings with it a new set of concepts and best practices. This book will begin by address the core concepts to help you get over the initial learning curve, and get started on using the APIs. The subsequent chapters will expand upon these topics, covering more advanced scenarios, and offering debugging advice, tips, FAQs, and summaries of topics beyond the APIs themselves (such as calling external services, publishing, licensing, protecting intellectual property, etc.)

Note that this book is published using a "lean" methodology  publishing early, and publishing often.  Since writing the book is strictly my "moonlighting" activity – my day-job is to be a developer on Office.js APIs, not a technical writer – it will take a good long while before I am actually done with all the content I want to write about. I would rather ship an early version of the book, addressing the most common questions and issues that I see folks struggling with, and then keep iterating on it from there.

In buying this e-book through LeanPub (where I’m also discounting it for the "early readers"), you are entitled to free updates to the book. So, expect to see more content appear month-to-month (and, if you sign up for email notification, to receive periodic emails updates about what new content got added).

I welcome any and all feedback about the writing, explanations, code-samples, and whatever else. I also welcome topic suggestions, if you see something I didn’t cover; or, if you see something that I plan to cover, but haven’t yet, just let me know and I can see if I can prioritize it.

Yours truly,

- Michael Zlatkovsky, the author

About the Author

Michael Zlatkovsky
Michael Zlatkovsky

This book is written for Office Developers, by an Office Developer. By the latter, I mean both that I had been a developer who used Office technology extensively for a number of years, and that I am now a developer on the Office Extensibility Platform team – the very team that created Office Add-ins.

Having been a key participant in the design of the new Office 2016 wave of Office.js APIs – and having seen folks embrace the framework, but struggle with some of the more concepts – I wanted to share some insights & techniques, as well as the full end-to-end story, of how to create Office Add-ins.

You can find me on StackOverflow, where I frequently answer questions tagged as "[office-js]" (which has been a source of inspiration for many sections of this book).  I have a backlog of topics I want to cover in this book: some already fleshed out, others less so.  In the spirit of the "lean" methodology, I will be updating the book frequently as I cover more and more topics.  Thanks for reading, and please feel free to contact me for feedback on the book, requests for topics, etc.

Yours truly,

- Michael Zlatkovsky

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